Qatar League champions Al Arabi look the team to beat at the 17th Asian Clubs Championship in Myanmar from August 23 to 31.
Sixteen teams are drawn into four groups at the annual Asian Volleyball Confederation-sanctioned event. The winners will get a direct entry into the FIVB Club World Championship in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, later this year.
Arabi have a good record in the tournament, being the only Qatari club to have won it in 2012 when they beat China’s Shanghai Tang Dynasty in the final.
They came close to repeating the feat last year, but lost to Chinese Taipei’s Taichung Bank in the title clash. They had also finished as runners-up in 2010 besides finishing third twice (2007 and 2009).
Coached by Tunisian Mawia Alajnaf, Arabi were in good nick last season, regaining the league after a gap of three years in addition to winning the Super Cup and Emir’s Cup. Arabi had played a couple of friendlies games against the Qatar national team before leaving for Myanmar.